Development of Amorphous Alloy Surface Coatings as Replacement for Chromate Technology

Period of Performance: 12/05/2008 - 12/04/2009

$750K

Phase 2 STTR

Recipient Firm

Electro Chemical Finishing
2610 Remico SW
Wyoming, MI 49519
Principal Investigator
Firm POC

Research Institution

University of Michigan
3003 South State Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
Institution POC

Abstract

Our Phase I studies have produced a number of amorphous metallic films with true glass microstructures that are entirely free of residual nanocrystalline phases, which lead to premature devitrification. The proprietary MetaGlass -101 Ni-based alloy received the most attention, because analytical considerations, verified by experimental observations, proved that these films met, or exceeded, the properties of hexavalent hard chrome electroplatings. At the same time this alloy system was capable of being grown without any environmentally deleterious effects via standard Physical Vapor Deposition techniques with appropriate proprietary processing algorithms. This alloy series was superior to hard chrome in wear resistance, hardness, modulus, thermal stability and corrosion resistance. Phase I observations indicated that MetaGlass -101 alloy would bond to the normal Cu/Ni electroplated leveling films that are used for ABS plastic parts. This film also readily adhered to stainless steel, H-13 steel, brass, and silicon substrates under laboratory PVD conditions, which gives us reasonable assurance that the MetaGlass - 101 alloy will adhere to many technically useful components. The main technical objective of our Phase II program is to enlarge our laboratory results to produce production scale parts throughput focusing on coatings that use our most promising proprietary MetaGlass - 101 alloy.